Walk - St Anthony Head and Place

6.4 miles (10.3 km)

Place Ferry Landing Stage - TR2 5EZ Place Ferry Landing Stage

Moderate - Terrain mostly easy, but with a steep climb from Molunan Beaches up to St Anthony Head. The stretch from St Anthony Head (where there is a car park) to a stile above the southern end of Porthbeor Beach (at SW 859 318) provides easy, level walking.

A circular walk of either 4½ or 6 miles can be started from the ferry landing stage at Place. Alternatively you can start from the car park at St Anthony Head. Whichever alternative you take, there are magnificent views as well as plenty of historical and wildlife interest to enjoy along the way. An especially good walk in autumn, when large flocks of many species of gull can be seen over the water. Children will enjoy the lighthouse and wartime features, and the hidden beaches at Porthbeor.

Porthbeor and Towan beaches are dog friendly. Have a look at our Top Dog Walks on the South West Coast Path for more dog friendly beaches and pubs.

The part of this walk around St Anthony Head, the bird hide and the Lighthouse have been classed as an Easy Access walk and the details can be found on the Phototrails website.

To check that this walk is suitable for you click here where you can find additional mapping and photographs showing gradients, path surfaces, and other detailed information.

There are a range of wonderful places to lay your head near the Coast Path for a well-earned sleep. From large and luxurious hotels, to small and personable B&B's, as well as self-catering options and campsites. The businesses that support the Path, where you've chosen to visit, are listed here.

Portscatho Holidays Limited

Properties from converted stables to large luxury homes, including properties with sea views, Wi-Fi, parking, fires and wood burning stoves, many accepting pets.

Braganza B&B

Stunning views of the harbour and bay from our Regency home. The perfect base to explore locally. Ample parking, free wifi, style and elegance.

Falmouth Lodge Backpackers

Convenient, comfortable and friendly only 2 mins from the Coast Path and 5 mins from the town for supper and train station

Treverbyn House B&B

Friendly, clean B&B situated in the picturesque village of Veryan in the heart of the beautiful Roseland peninsular, close to the Coast Path. Open all year round.

Interactive Elevation

Route Description

A circular walk of either 4½ or 6 miles can be started from the ferry landing stage at Place. Alternatively you can start from the car park at St Anthony Head. This also gives you the option of the shorter, easy, level ‘there and back’ walk to the stile above Porthbeor Beach. Whichever alternative you take, there are magnificent views as well as plenty of historical and wildlife interest to enjoy along the way.
If you are starting from the ferry landing stage at Place, the service from St Mawes is seasonal - see our Ferries page for details).

  1. From the landing stage, walk up the lane past Place House.

The house (built in 1840 on the site of an Elizabethan building) is privately occupied and looks strangely un-Cornish.

  1. The Coast Path turns right off the lane and goes to St Anthony Church before wending its way past Cellars Beach and along the edge of the fields to Carricknath Point. A little further on, the twin sandy beaches of Great and Little Molunan provide an ideal stopping or picnic spot before beginning the steep ascent to St Anthony Head.

From the headland you will enjoy magnificent views across the Fal Estuary – the world’s third largest natural harbour. The toposcope beside the gun emplacement will help you to identify the various landmarks including Manacles Point, Carrick Roads and St Mawes. It’s also worth spending some time exploring the military remains commanding the harbour entrance. These include the 19th century fortifications and second world war features such as the battery observation post. By following the pathway along the ditch and rampart you will reach the bird hide, from which you may see fulmars, gulls, shags, cormorants and if you’re lucky, the St Anthony peregrine falcons.

  1. Return the way you came to rejoin the Coast Path.

The walk to and around Zone Point will start to open up views of Nare Head and Dodman Point away to the east. The thick scrubland of this area soon gives way to open fields and arable farmland. The ‘White Alps’ of the china clay country around St Austell can be seen to the northeast.

Before the next headland (Porthmellon Head) you will pass the lovely remote beach of Porthbeor, which can be reached by a steeply stepped path.

  1. Above the beach, take the short link path to the road. Turn right and then left to go through the tiny hamlet of Bohortha. Ignore the path going off to the right and continue straight on to return to the bottom of the lane near Place House and the ferry landing stage.

The walk can be extended to some six miles by continuing along the Coast Path from Porthbeor Beach to Towan Beach. Killegerran Head follows around the corner from Porthmellon, and wider views of Gerrans Bay start to open up. Killegerran is being grazed by cattle and shetland ponies to reduce the amount of bracken and scrub and encourage a more diverse flora and fauna. Beyond the Point, grey seals can sometimes be seen gathering in the small cove during the winter months.

  1. Finally you reach the open sweep of Towan Beach, and about half way along a bridle path to the left will take you the 200 metres to the road near Porth Farm. Turn right and follow it for a short distance to a footpath on the left hand side – this will take you around the edge of Porth Creek and back to the ferry.

Public transport

St Mawes can be reached by ferry from Falmouth – phone 01872 862 312 or visit the Fal Riverlinks website for details. St Mawes can also be reached by bus from Truro. For timetable information, zoom in on the interactive map and click on the bus stops, visit Traveline or phone 0871 200 22 33.

Parking

St Anthony Head, Porth Farm (Postcode for Sat Navs: TR2 5EZ).

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